Get acquainted with HDRP settings for enhanced performance

HDRP projects similarly use Graphics and Player settings, with the addition of three more sets of settings that provide access to advanced default configurations of the render pipeline.

  • In Graphics settings, for instance, the Scriptable Render Pipeline (SRP) settings refer to a default HD Render Pipeline Asset. This HD Render Pipeline Asset contains settings that can be overridden at each quality level.
  • The HDRP Default Settings tab configures:
    • Default Frame settings, with default properties that can be overridden for each camera (including cameras used for Planar Reflections or Reflection Probes). Here you can decide whether the cameras render transparent objects by default.
    • Default Volume components, which contain properties that can be overridden for each “camera position in scene.” For example, you can define default post-processing effect intensities, which can be overridden and become “strong outdoors but weak indoors” using specific volumes for your scenes.
    • The Default Diffusion Profile Assets property, which can be overridden by a Diffusion Profile Override component in the Volume components section of the HDRP Default Settings tab. This, in turn, can be overridden per “camera position in scene.” Currently there’s also a “redundant override layer” for the Diffusion Profile system, but since we’re constantly looking to improve UX in HDRP, a solution for this issue is already underway.
    • Other properties, which are “pure global settings,” cannot be overridden.
  • Finally, some low-level settings that are less likely to require configuration are specified in the HDRP Config package. These settings are also “pure global settings.” Changing them requires recompilation of the C# assembly and the HDRP shader framework. That’s why they’re placed at a different location.

Quality levels

With the Built-in Render Pipeline, you can define a number of quality levels in the Quality Settings tab. For each quality level, some graphics settings, such as anisotropic texture usage, can be specified so that less hardware resources are used on low-end platforms.

For HDRP projects, specifically, an override HD Render Pipeline Asset can be selected for each quality level. This offers more configurability compared to the Built-in Render Pipeline, since the HD Render Pipeline Asset stores several parameters, such as maximum number of directional, punctual, and area lights onscreen, the color-grading LUT size, and the light cookie atlas size, among others.

Some properties in the Quality Settings tab for a Built-in Render Pipeline project only apply to the Built-in Render Pipeline. In an HDRP project, these settings might disappear from their original locations and reappear elsewhere as “replacement settings.”

In a Built-in Render Pipeline project, for instance, the Quality Settings tab controls the Shadow Resolution property. In an HDRP project, however, the Lighting > Shadows section of a HD Render Pipeline Asset controls the resolution of shadow maps.

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